Central & Eastern Europe 2019

Tuesday 26 March: Prague (Czech Republic) | Wednesday 27 March: Budapest (Hungary)
Thursday 28 March: Warsaw (Poland) | Friday 29 March: Krakow (Poland)

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JOIN our 8th Spotlight on Africa & Indian Ocean Islands workshop in Central & Eastern Europe covering Prague Czech Republic, Budapest Hungary and Poland (Warsaw & Krakow) taking place from Tuesday 26 March to Friday 29 March 2019.

Houston Travel Marketing Services have again teamed up with Paddington Tucker of Travel Advance based in Prague to jointly run this workshop. Travel Advance will look after the logistics of the workshops and arrange all the advertising and promotions with the Trade press in the three countries.

KRAKOW in Poland is a new workshop we have added as an extra city to the roadshows. Krakow is the second most important city in Poland is home to many Outbound Tour Operators and Travel Agents. We expect to attract trade from other Southern Poland cities such as Katowice, Rzeszow, Wroclaw and Bielsko-Biala.

We are also planning to host important Africa Tour Operators from Slovenia, Slovakia, Croatia and Serbia to attend the Budapest & Prague workshops.

Our aim is “Quality more than Quantity” and we target attendance by Senior Management of companies and personnel directly responsible for promoting and selling Africa.

Our March 2018 workshops attracted 43 Buyers from 33 companies in Prague and 37 buyers in Warsaw from 31 companies.

We have always succeeded in attracting a high-quality audience of senior executives from all the major Outbound Tour Operators, Travel Agencies & Incentive Travel Companies.

We have had an enthusiastic reaction from the African airlines based in these cities who will support the workshops whole-heartedly and will promote attendance to the Travel Agents and Tour Operators from all Central & Eastern European countries.

We have a sophisticated online booking service for the trade to register. This website will give full details of the exhibitors to facilitate pre-workshop networking between attendees and exhibitors.


To promote Outbound Travel from the Central & Eastern Europe to Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands.

Marketing Profile of the Three Countries

Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary are former communist countries whose economies are fast catching up with the rest of Europe. A combination of business-friendly environments and educated, hardworking labour forces have attracted considerable investment, allowing these countries to avoid the worst of the global downturn and retain – in the case of Poland and Czech Republic – stable and strong currencies.

The buying power of people from these countries has increased at rates dramatically higher than in Western Europe. In the 1990s only a small section of citizens, principally in their thirties and forties, could afford to purchase luxury goods, including long-haul Outbound Tourism. Now this first generation of affluent citizens has grown in size and reached its fifties and sixties, having accumulated wealth, and behind it is a new generation of wealthy people in their thirties and forties. So with the passing of a generation since the revolutions of 1989 a whole new market for exotic holidays has appeared.

Sub-Saharan Africa has done little to promote itself in these countries, and lack of awareness is the greatest challenge we face. Consumers are looking for new winter sun destinations. Zanzibar has seen a dramatic increase in arrivals from this region, and the Kenyan coast has also witnessed a recovery in recent years.

The Indian Ocean is already an established destination here, and knowledge of the rest of Africa is growing. South Africa, Namibia, Kenya and Tanzania have become popular destinations for the MICE sector.


The Czech Republic is a country of 10.5 million, a medium-sized EU state comparable with Portugal or Belgium. Its capital, Prague (1.5 million) was recently judged to be the fifth wealthiest city in Europe, and certainly the Czech Republic is considered the most prosperous of the former ex-communist countries.

Czechs have a reputation as adventurous travellers, though, being landlocked, beach destinations have a special appeal.

Over 8000 Czech’s visited SA during 2017. Kenya has seen an increase of 84% year on year for the period January-July 2018 against the same period last year.

To give an indication of the size of the outbound market 70,000 Czechs visited Dubai in 2017 and 210 000 Czechs visited Egypt.


Hungary is a medium-sized European state with a population of 10 Million. Since 2013 the country has witnessed an economic recovery. It is highly centralised and all its major businesses and Tour Operators are located in the capital Budapest (population 2.million).

It should be noted that the Hungarian-speaking world stretches outside of Hungary and there are a further 5 million Hungarian speakers living in Slovakia, Romania, Croatia, Ukraine and Serbia. They have strong emotional links with Hungary and book their holidays via Hungarian Tour Operators.

As with The Czech Republic due to its landlocked status beach destinations are by far the most popular holidays but interest in safaris is growing.

In 2017 it is estimated that over 4,200 Hungarians visited South Africa, a ten percent increase on 2016 numbers. To give an indication of the size of the Outbound Market 37,000 Hungarians visited Dubai in 2017.


With a population of 39 million, Poland is now the sixth largest economy in the EU, and also the sixth largest state. Poland has enjoyed an annual GDP growth of approx. 3.5% of GDP for the last three years, well above the European average.

Over the last 10 years the compound growth rate has been 28%. Warsaw (population 2.6 million) is the capital and economic centre, though leading Tour Operators are located across Poland, and other key areas of economic activity include Krakow, Katowice, Poznan, Lodz, Wroclaw and Gdansk.

During our previous seven Spotlight workshops we were pleasantly surprised at how many high-quality operators attended from outside Warsaw, which shows hunger for Africa as a destination. We also noticed a sizeable quantity of operators catering towards MICE travel for corporate clientele. In 2017, 14,000 Polish tourists visited SA and in 2018 there has already been a 14% increase in arrivals.

Kenya had 12,000 arrivals from Poland in 2017. There has been 18% growth in first half of year for Poland 2018 against 2017. Poland is Kenya’s eighth largest European source market and ranks as the twentieth biggest in the world (Russia only ranks 28th in importance!)


African and Indian Ocean Island:

  • Hotel Groups;
  • Safari Lodges;
  • National, Provincial and City Tourism Offices;
  • Resorts;
  • Attractions;
  • Car Rental Companies;
  • Airlines;
  • Golf and Sports Tour Operators.


  • Outbound Tour Operators specialising in Africa/Indian Ocean Islands;
  • Travel Agents;
  • Incentive Travel Companies,
  • Travel Press.


We expect 40 – 50 trade attendees at each workshop. We aim for Quality rather than Quantity and target attendance by senior management of companies.


Travel Advance have extensive knowledge of the markets & access to various Travel Trade databases which we will use for emailing out the invitations. Airlines attending also send invitations to their Travel Agency databases. The Travel Trade Press in each country are also expected to give us good editorial coverage prior to the workshops.


Each workshop will be three hours long. The workshop format will be a FREE FLOW table top format with approximately 20 tables.


Monday 25 March: Arrive Prague

  • 19:00: Welcome party for Exhibitors at a typical Czech restaurant
  • Overnight Hotel Kings Court

Tuesday 26 March: Prague – Budapest

  • 08:00 – 13:30: Morning workshop at Hotel Kings Court
  • Workshop finishes after lunch at 13:30
  • 17:00 or later fly to Budapest
  • Overnight Novotel Central Budapest

Wednesday 27 March: Budapest – Warsaw

  • 08:00 – 13:30: Morning workshop at Novotel Budapest


  • 17:00 or later fly to Warsaw.
  • Overnight Bristol Hotel Old Town Warsaw (5 star)


  • Spend the afternoon in Budapest doing sales calls or sightseeing.
  • Overnight Novotel Central Budapest

Thursday 28 March: Warsaw

  • AM fly from Budapest to Warsaw if applicable
  • Morning free for sales calls or sightseeing
  • 15:00 – 20:00: Late afternoon and evening workshop & cocktail party at Bristol Hotel Old Town
  • Overnight Bristol Hotel Old Town Warsaw (5 star)

Friday 29 March Warsaw – Krakow

  • 08:30: Train from Warsaw to Krakow (90mins)
  • 10:30: Arrive Krakow. Proceed to Hotel ANDELS 100m from station.
  • 11:30 -14:00: Presentation and lunch for Tour Operators and Travel Agents from Krakow and other Southern Poland cities such as Katowice, Rzeszow, Wroclaw and Bielsko–Biala. There will be group presentations by each exhibitor followed by a Cocktail Networking Lunch.
    We expect 20-30 trade to attend.
  • Either return by train to Warsaw or overnight in Krakow and do a tour to Auschwitz on Saturday.


  • All workshop expenses,
  • promotional costs,
  • three breakfasts,
  • three lunches,
  • 50 word description and company logo in the official catalogue distributed to all attendees,
  • full contact address list of all attendees (and no-shows) will be sent to exhibitors after the workshops.


Exhibitors have a choice of staying two nights in Budapest or two Nights in Warsaw. On the Booking Form below we show the per night rate and exhibitors can choose which nights they would like to book. Houston Travel Marketing Services will be booking allocations of rooms in each city and can make reservations on your behalf. The costs will be included on your invoice. Superior Rooms / twin rooms are available at an additional cost.


Air fares to Prague and air fares Prague/Budapest & Budapest/Warsaw, taxis, airport-hotel transfers & train fare Warsaw-Krakow, etc. European flight sectors should be booked as part of your international ticket or online with the airlines directly.


Schengen visas are required where applicable. Houston Travel Marketing Services & Travel Advance can supply visa support letters if requested.

Spotlight Travel Workshops: Central & Eastern Europe Roadshow: Booking/Information Form

Workshop Selection:

Company Details

Terms and Conditions of Participation

  • Full payment needs to be made by 10 January 2019
  • Payment can be made either in EUR, USD or ZAR to Houston Travel Marketing Services in South Africa.
  • PLEASE NOTE: All quoted costs are excluding South African VAT – payable by South African registered companies only
  • Rand / Dollar / EURO Exchange Rates: Houston Travel Marketing Services reserves the right to increase the Rand and US Dollar cost of the workshops due to
    fluctuations in the exchange rates.

All bookings are subject to the Standard Terms & Conditions of Houston Travel Marketing Services CC as published here:

Terms and Conditions of Participation.

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